an idiot in london


Saturday, 29th April.
Do the simple things

The Ispurs are the Tottenham Hotspur Mailing List soccer team. I found the ground (again, more by good luck than good map reading) and introduced myself to the person that looked the most like a Damy.

Damy is the manager/co-ordinator/something for the Ispurs. The team plays against other teams representing other clubs' mailing lists. Today we were playing against the London-based Carlisle listees.

"Some of the lads are already out there warming up," said Damy, "just look for the fat goalkeeper." Easy to find, as it turned out, even for a directionally-challenged individual like me.

The lads were like any amateur team: a motley bunch. Skinny, fat, gangly, athletic, swift, slow, and the obligatory bad haircut. It was only a friendly match, so when it was clear that only six members of the Carlisle team were going to turn up (including a ring-in wearing a West Ham shirt and doing his best Julian Dicks impersonation) we lent them a few of our players. Nine-a-side it was, and a right royal hammering ensued.

We lost 6-2 in the end, after a match not worth detailed description! An Ian error led to the first goal, and it was all downhill from there. We disintegrated into a team of coaches, as all amateur teams do. It was a glorious morning, sun shining, and a great excuse to get out amongst it. The result didn't really matter. (Yeah right. Any of you that know me know that I get a bit competitive on the field and take losing particularly badly.)

After an uninspiring afternoon trudging around Covent Garden elbowing camera-toting tourists out of the way, I arrived back at the Dawes Road Palace a Grumpy Young Man. I opened up a big bottle of harsh on my unsuspecting flatmates. Poor bastards. My family are conditioned to tolerating me after a loss. These buggers just didn't know what had hit them. Where's Ian, and what have you done with him??

In the early evening Simon and I went for a kick of the footy. After a while a bloke walked towards us and said "Mind if I join you for a kick?"

"G'day mate!" I said, "Where are you from?" Steve was from Perth, and he and I had one thing in common - we both hate the Weagles, aka the most boring team on the planet.

I had arranged to meet up with Rob, a friend of a friend, tonight. He's a Charlton supporter, and he and his mates were going out to celebrate the Addicks winning the first division championship. I rang him to find out where to meet him, but only got his voicemail. Later I received a voicemail message from Rob that went something like this:

Yeah hi mate must have stifled burp just missed your call...unclear...totally arseholed... bloke screaming...we're at...where are we at? Look get off at London Bridge... mate we're all totally arseholed...and...more loud screaming...see you then...

I rang him back and only got voicemail, so I figured I'd just spend the night in. As if a Grumpy Young Man would want to spend the evening with a bunch of pissed-as-newts Charlton supporters anyway!